PDXpert PLM Software: Import bulk part, document, file data

PDXpert's External Data Importer initializes your PLM system by importing your (and your partners') existing part and document records. These are then linked into lists of bills of materials, qualified sources, references and design file attachments.

Importing the example data

This example shows how to structure your own data for importing using comma-separated value (CSV) files.

Download the example import files: Example-PDXpertImport.zip

The following instructions reflect PDXpert release 12.0 and later. The import files can be used with PDXpert 10.0 or later.

  1. To prevent possible conflicts between existing and imported records and to ensure you have administrator permissions, reset the database to provide a known valid starting point. On the PDXpert Server window, click the Reset Database button.

  2. Create a new C:\PDXpertImport folder. Open the compressed Example-PDXpertImport.zip file and copy all CSV files (and the folder Library) into the new C:\PDXpertImport folder.

    This folder path is only necessary to import the example file attachments. If you prefer to use a different path, edit each full path contained in the 8-Example-ListRevisionFiles.csv and 9-Example-ListItemFilesLinks.csv import files.

  3. Open the PDXpert client application. On the Software License Key window, enter your Organization name. This is the home organization.

  4. On the Tools menu, select the External Data Importer... command.

  5. Start by importing the example organizations. This file contains a list of partner organizations — manufacturers and distributors — that become sources of purchased parts.

    1. In the Import Type dropdown list, select the Collection: Organizations option (or, in older releases, Organizations collection).

    2. Click Import button.

    3. Navigate to and select the file1-Example-CollectionOrganizations.csv.

    All partner organization records are imported into the Organizations collection.

  6. Import some example users. This file creates both the Persons collection members as well as the related user log-in accounts.

    1. In the Import Type dropdown list, select the Collection: Persons option (or, in older releases, Persons collection).

    2. Click Import button.

    3. Navigate to and select the file2-Example-CollectionPersons.csv.

  7. Create some groups and assign persons to them.

    1. In the Import Type dropdown list, select the Collection: Groups option.

    2. Click Import button.

    3. Navigate to and select the file3-Example-CollectionGroups.csv.

  8. Import the Item Master records (home and partner parts and documents). Item masters must be imported before other files, because later imports simply establish relationships between the item masters.

    1. In the Import Type dropdown list, select Item Masters. (You don't need to mark any checkboxes.)

    2. Click Import button.

    3. Navigate to and select the file4-Example-ItemMaster.csv.

    The imported items are assigned their basic attributes.

  9. In these steps, we'll create item-to-item relationships such as BOMs and sources.

    Select each Import Type from the list, click the Import button, and navigate to the example data file:

    • Bills of Materials: 5-Example-ListBOM.csv

    • Sources: 6-Example-ListSources.csv

    • References: 7-Example-ListReferences.csv

    • Change-controlled design files: 8-Example-ListRevisionFiles.csv

    • Background files & web links: 9-Example-ListItemFilesLinks.csv

  10. Set the part and document numbering to begin after the last imported item numbers. In the Collection Explorer, within the General section, select the Sequences:Identifier group, and update Part numbers with Next assignment 100067, and Document numbers with Next assignment 10104.

  11. After all data files are imported, close and re-start the client application to refresh all collections.

Search for and open the top-level assembly 100034, and browse each list and its items.

Importing your company's data

This tutorial imported a few hundred records. The evaluation software limits the number of items you can use without a license key. If you plan to import more than a few thousand items, request a software license key.

PDXpert provides additional capabilities for importing your own data. These include a large set of standard attributes, as well as user-defined custom attributes. The procedure for importing your own company's data is in the application help file (on-line here).

While preparing your own data for import, it's a good idea to have on-going access to the PDXpert Server to perform server-side tasks such as database reset, backup and restore.

If you're importing Unicode characters, be sure that your text file is encoded as UTF-8, rather than DOS/Windows ANSI. Use a CSV file editor or plain text editor (such as Notepad++) to enforce encoding; Microsoft Excel may not. Always check that your imported Unicode data has been correctly imported.

The PDXpert help file includes column definitions for each import file format used by the External Data Importer tool (within the PDXpert client, open the Help menu or press the F1 key). More detailed information about using the Organizations, Persons, Sequences:Identifier, Document Types and Part Types collections can be found in the related application help topics. Also, see our application notes Preparing to import PDXpert file attachments and Creating release sets for imported data.

Please contact us if you'd like expert assistance in cleaning, reconciling, formatting and importing your legacy data.